Race Weekend Central

Thinkin’ Out Loud: 2021 Martinsville NASCAR Playoff Race

#48: Alex Bowman, Hendrick Motorsports, Chevrolet Camaro Ally celebrates winning the Xfinity 500 at Martinsville.

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

What happened? Alex Bowman won the Xfinity 500 at Martinsville Sunday (Oct. 31) after bumping Denny Hamlin out of the way and surviving an overtime restart. Kyle Busch, Brad Keselowski, Martin Truex Jr. and William Byron rounded out the top-five finishers. RETWEET to congratulate @Alex_Bowman on his WIN at @MartinsvilleSwy! #NASCAR pic.twitter.com/qNd6DVbKpO — NASCAR on …

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The Big 6: Questions Answered After the 2021 Xfinity 500

Martin Truex Jr. and Denny Hamlin talk on pit road before the 2021 Xfinity 500 at Martinsville Speedway. (Photo: Getty Images)

(Photo: Logan Riely/Getty Images)

Who … should you be talking about after the Xfinity 500? 2021 has been a breakout year for Alex Bowman. The 28-year-old posted three early wins and advanced to the Round of 12 in this year’s playoffs before stumbling a bit. At Martinsville Speedway, he put an exclamation point on the deal after a late-race …

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Up to Speed: Denny Hamlin Needs to Let it Go

Denny Hamlin scratches his head on pit road at Charlotte Motor Speedway. (Photo: NKP)

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

Denny Hamlin doesn’t have to be happy.  He doesn’t have to like getting spun by Alex Bowman in the closing laps at Martinsville Speedway.  He doesn’t have to celebrate missing out on a potential win during a 2021 NASCAR Cup Series season where he has enjoyed plenty of strong runs, but few victories. No, Hamlin …

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Alex Bowman Bumps Denny Hamlin From Lead at Martinsville, Claims 4th Win of 2021

#11: Denny Hamlin, Joe Gibbs Racing, Toyota Camry FedEx Ground confronts race winner #48: Alex Bowman, Hendrick Motorsports, Chevrolet Camaro Ally after the checkered flag

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

On Halloween afternoon at Martinsville Speedway, Alex Bowman bumped Denny Hamlin late in the race to set up an overtime restart and his fourth win of the season in the NASCAR Cup Series. Spooky vibes didn’t pervade the Xfinity 500 Sunday (Oct. 31) until late, when cautions started flying faster than the cars were running …

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Frontstretch 2-Minute Drill: Xfinity 500 at Martinsville

2019 Martinsville Mencs Racing Nkp

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

The penultimate race of the 2021 NASCAR Cup Series at Martinsville Speedway is upon us, and pretty much everything is still up in the air. Kyle Larson has won three straight races, including sweeping both events in the Round of 8 thus far at Texas Motor Speedway and Kansas Speedway. He’s led a combined 386 …

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Stock Car Scoop: Which Drivers Will Move On at Martinsville?

2021 Martinsville I Cup Denny Hamlin Pack Racing Nkp

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

The NASCAR Cup Series heads to Martinsville Speedway for the penultimate race of the season. Kyle Larson has won the last three races and swept the Round of 8 so far, which sets up three available playoff spots for seven drivers. How chaotic will Sunday (Oct. 31)’s Halloween elimination race be? Which drivers will secure …

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New Year, Same Story, Different Result? Kyle Larson Hopes So

Kevin Harvick and Kyle Larson make contact in a NASCAR Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway, September 2021 televised on NBCSN. Photo: NKP

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

2020 was a difficult year for everyone. NASCAR led the charge back from the initial COVID craziness and the fans were thrilled. As the year unfolded for the sport, Kevin Harvick was clearly the cream of the crop. In the playoffs, the Round of 8 saw his team stumble, fall and fail, resulting in him …

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Kyle Larson Once Again on Pole for Martinsville Cup Race

Kyle Larson smiles before Texas fall 2021 NASCAR Cup Series race, NKP

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

For the third consecutive week Kyle Larson will start from the pole, this time in the NASCAR Cup Series race at Martinsville Speedway. The No. 5 Hendrick Motorsports driver is on a hot streak as he’s won the past three playoff races. His win at Texas Motor Speedway secured his spot in the Championship 4 …

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Did You Notice?: What’s Next for Ford’s NASCAR Future After Rocky 2021 Playoffs?

Ford drivers Ryan Blaney and Austin Cindric chat on pit road at Kansas Speedway. (Photo: NKP)

#12: Ryan Blaney, Team Penske, Ford Mustang Menards/Moen and #33: Austin Cindric, Team Penske, Ford Mustang MoneyLion

Did You Notice? … The way Ford has struggled during the 2021 NASCAR Cup Series playoffs? As I first pointed out at CBS Sports, they’ve gone 0-for-8 and sit outside Championship 4 position for the first time in the history of the format, implemented in 2014. That could change this weekend at Martinsville Speedway if any …

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Dropping the Hammer: NASCAR Still King on Sunday Despite F1 Gains

NASCAR at Kansas Speedway

(Photo by Meg Oliphant/Getty Images via NASCAR Media)

“Absolutely unacceptable.” According to Denny Hamlin, that’s how NASCAR president Steve Phelps described the glaringly sparse grandstands at Texas Motor Speedway earlier this month. The grandstands, once packed to the rafters in the track’s first decade of existence, now had entire sections (including where I sat during the inaugural race in 1997) blocked off for …

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NASCAR Mailbox: Regardless of Championship, Has Kyle Larson’s Season Been Successful?

2021 Cup Kansas Ii Kyle Larson Flag Nkp

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

With nine wins already, is Kyle Larson‘s season a successful one regardless of if he wins the championship? – Mark K., Newton, Iowa Hell yeah, it is. He’s won nine damn times, for goodness’ sake. Championships used to be the barometer of how success was measured in NASCAR. But it’s not anymore and hasn’t been …

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NASCAR Stat Sheet: Kyle Larson Still Shredding the Record Books With Kansas Win

Kyle Larson

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

Larson scores another trifecta Here we are again. Another race weekend is in the books, and while the track was different and the playoff drivers having good or bad days may have rotated a bit, one thing remains strikingly constant: the winner. Kyle freaking Larson has run off with another trophy, his ninth of the …

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